I used to love the Romantics, especially Keats and Yeats. But lately I have been disillusioned with them. The charm of their poetry (charm in the sense of illusion) seems to be the offer of a different reality, a different world. If you explore that world, you come at nothing. It remains an illusion. So they return to this world, and it is this world that they remain to. Their imagery is nothing but a substitute for psychological states of their minds/hearts. The relation between the Romantics and the mystics has often been mentioned. A look at the poetry of mysticism points out the difference. The mystics, especially the Islamic ones have a definite metaphysic behind their poetry. The imagery is used to discover that metaphysical reality, and not a psychological state. And that is why Sufi poetry takes us really to a different realm, while the romantics keep us to where we are; only delude us that this is something else.
Thursday, November 20, 2008
The Bible talks of how a long time ago, there was only one language unlike the many languages that exist today. I think you'll find the lines in the Book of Genesis. Now man was becoming very powerful and so arrogant that he began to think he could reach the heavens with his sheer strength. Therefore, God, in order to teach Man a lesson decided to create different languages in order to disable efficient communication. People wouldn't be able to share their thoughts if there were different languages and Man would be brought down a peg or two. The tower of Babel was built by King Nimrod in order to commemorate two things: The fact that the city of Babylon had achieved grandeur and also, the existence of language. Therefore, whenever people speak of Babel, they are actually paying homage to language and its essence.So if I were to speak of having the knowledge of Babel, I am saying that I respect and understand the power of language
Wollstonecraft's novel, Frankenstein, or The Modern Prometheus, was published about this time in 1818. Even though Wollstonecraft was only twenty at the time she wrote the novel, it was both a popular and critical success, and continues to be represented in film and theater productions. Many interpretations of the novel exist, but when viewed in terms of Wollstonecraft's life, the story depicts the cruelty of a society that persecutes outcasts. When Clara died on a trip to Italy, Wollstonecraft blamed her husband. However, the birth of Percy Florence in 1820 lifted her spirits. Percy was the only Shelley/Wollstonecraft child who survived. In 1822, days before Shelley's thirtieth birthday, he drowned while sailing his boat the Don Juan. Mary edited his Posthumous Poems and Poetical Works for publication in 1824 and 1839, respectively. Although her finances were secure after she received the inheritance of her father-in-law,Timothy Shelley, she did not have the strength to complete a planned project of her husband's biography.